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COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. ROBERT HANKINS (04/22/81)

submitted: April 22, 1981.

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA,
v.
ROBERT HANKINS, APPELLANT



No. 922 Philadelphia, 1980, Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas, Criminal Division, Philadelphia County, August Term, 1975, Nos. 204-208.

COUNSEL

Louis Lipschitz, Philadelphia, for appellant.

Gaele McLaughlin Barthold, Assistant District Attorney, Philadelphia, for Commonwealth, appellee.

Wickersham, Montemuro and Watkins, JJ.

Author: Montemuro

[ 293 Pa. Super. Page 342]

This is an appeal from an order denying relief under the Post-Conviction Hearing Act.*fn1 Appellant's sole contention on appeal is that trial counsel was ineffective for failing to

[ 293 Pa. Super. Page 343]

    file a pre-trial motion to suppress a statement made by appellant to the police prior to receiving his Miranda warnings. We find no merit in appellant's argument and accordingly affirm the order of the court below.

On October 20, 1975, appellant was tried with two co-defendants in a non-jury trial and convicted of robbery,*fn2 possession of an instrument of crime,*fn3 carrying a firearm in a public place,*fn4 carrying a firearm without a license,*fn5 and criminal conspiracy.*fn6 Post-verdict motions were denied and appellant was sentenced to five (5) to ten (10) years imprisonment for robbery. Sentence was suspended on the other charges. Appellant filed a direct appeal to the Superior Court which affirmed his conviction. Commonwealth v. Hankins, 251 Pa. Super. 137, 380 A.2d 415 (1977). The Supreme Court denied allocatur on April 4, 1978.

The facts of the case are as follows:

On July 14, 1975, police responded to a radio call that three black males with shotguns were seen on the corner of 6th Street and Indiana Avenue in Philadelphia. Upon arriving there, the police found an armed robbery in progress at Herb's Bar. Shortly before, three black males had entered Herb's Bar. Brandishing weapons, the robbers told the people in the bar that this was a "stick up" and to get on the floor. The men then took cash from the bar owner and his patrons. Before the robbers could leave, the police arrived.

When the police tried to enter the premises, they found the front door was blocked, but they were able to see that the robbery victims inside were lying on the floor, including a woman ...


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